Early recovery is a critical time in preventing relapse. This is when you build healthy routines and reinforce the strategies you’ve learned in addiction treatment. However, relapse prevention is something you must continue practicing to maintain a healthy lifestyle free from substance use.
Some of the most obvious factors are to stay away from drugs and alcohol, especially in early recovery, and not put yourself in situations where you know you will be tempted to use. This may mean breaking off old friendships with people who are still in active addiction and focusing on friendships with those who support your recovery and choice to remain substance-free.
Strategies for Reducing Risk of Relapse
There are many other things you can do as well:
- Practice healthy forms of distraction such as reading, writing, exercising, painting, playing piano, volunteering, or anything else that keeps your hands and mind busy in a good way.
- Make time for things you enjoy. This can help boost your mood and allow you to deal with challenging situations in a more effective way. A positive attitude and outlook are important.
- Talk to someone if you’re going through a rough patch. You don’t have to go it alone. Therapists, counselors, support groups, family, and friends are all there for you and can provide support in different ways. Know who you can turn to in different situations.
- Stay active and involved. Isolation and boredom are major triggers for relapse, so keep yourself busy and find a routine that works for you. Consider volunteering or taking up a new hobby or class you’re interested in.
- Surround yourself with people who support your recovery and will hold you accountable.
Through treatment at Above It All, you can work through the challenges you face and build a strong network of support and solid relapse prevention plan. We are here to support you in thriving in recovery and creating a life you love.
- Promises Treatment Center, Feel Yourself Slipping? Tips to Help You Get It Together Again. April 4, 2016.
- Alta Mira Recovery Programs, What Is Relapse? Accessed April 17, 2016.
- North Point Washington, The Link Between Drug Relapses, Addiction and Stress. Accessed April 22, 2016.
- DAT, Stressors That Trigger Relapse. Accessed April 15, 2016.